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Disney announces new 'Star Wars' trilogy, live-action TV show
Walt Disney Co. is making a new "Star Wars" trilogy, the company said in a news release Thursday. Disney said it is tapping Rian Johnson, who directed the upcoming film "Star Wars: The Last Jedi" to write and direct the first of the new films, and create the entire trilogy. The new trilogy will be separate from the Skywalker-themed episodic saga, the company said, and will introduce new characters "from a corner of the galaxy that 'Star Wars' lore has never before explored." In a conference call related to the earnings report Disney released Thursday afternoon, Chief Executive Robert Iger also said that Disney is developing a live-action "Star Wars" television series that will appear on the streaming service the company is planning to launch. Disney stock was up slightly to $103.07 in late trading, after originally falling after the earnings report was released. The stock has dropped 1% this year, as the S&P 500 index has gained 16%.Market Pulse Stories are Rapid-fire, short news bursts on stocks and markets as they move. Visit MarketWatch.com for more information on this news.
Dow, S&P 500 close higher; biotech weakness pressures Nasdaq
The Dow and S&P 500 ended higher on Thursday, supported by a steady stream of healthy earnings, though weakness in the biotechnology sector pressured the Nasdaq. The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 71 points, or 0.3%, to 23,401. The S&P 500 added 3.3 points to 2,560, a gain of 0.1%. The Nasdaq Composite Index ended down 7 points, or 0.1%, at 6,557. The Nasdaq's weakness came as biotech shares sold off sharply. The iShares Nasdaq Biotechnology ETF lost 2.3% after Celgene Corp. reported disappointing results and cut its outlook. Celgene shares ended 16% lower. On the upside, Twitter Inc. rose 20% on the back of its results while Ford Motor Co. ended up 1%. The stocks of companies in the pharmaceutical supply chain dropped after a report that Amazon has obtained approval to become a wholesale distributor in a number of states. Rite Aid Corp. sank 6.2% while CVS Health Corp. was down 2.9%. CVS shares were also impacted by reports it would buy Aetna . Shares of Aetna ended 11.5% higher. Adding to the buying momentum, the House of Representatives passed a budget blueprint on Thursday, paving the way for the Senate to later pass a tax-reform package.Market Pulse Stories are Rapid-fire, short news bursts on stocks and markets as they move. Visit MarketWatch.com for more information on this news.
Drug stocks drop after report that Amazon has obtained pharmacy licenses
The stocks of companies in the pharmaceutical supply chain dropped in Thursday afternoon trade after a report by the St. Louis Post-Dispatch that online retailer Amazon has obtained approval to become a wholesale distributor in a number of states. Amazon has received approval in at least 12 states, the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reported. Speculation about an Amazon pharmacy entry has swirled since a CNBC report on the subject earlier this year, but Amazon has repeatedly declined to comment on or confirm any interest in pharmacy. Such a move would likely threaten a number of industry players, including drug wholesalers, pharmacy chains and pharmacy-benefit managers, middlemen that negotiate drug prices. Rite Aid Corp. shares dropped 5.6% in Thursday afternoon trade, CVS Health Corp. shares dropped 4.8%, Express Scripts Holding Company shares dropped 3.5%, McKesson Corp. shares dropped 3.4%, AmerisourceBergen Corp. shares dropped 4.4%, Walgreens Boots Alliance shares dropped 3.7% and Cardinal Health Inc. shares dropped 2.5%, compared with a 0.2% rise in the S&P 500 . Many of the stocks have plunged in the last several months on concerns about Amazon. Market Pulse Stories are Rapid-fire, short news bursts on stocks and markets as they move. Visit MarketWatch.com for more information on this news.
Walgreens to shutter 600 stores as part of Rite Aid deal
Walgreens plans to close about 600 drugstores as it completes a $4.38 billion deal to buy nearly 2,000 locations from rival Rite Aid
General Electric, Rite Aid Drop into Wednesday’s 52-Week Low Club
Micron to sell $1 billion in fresh shares amid memory-price spike, stock dips
Micron Technology Inc. shares dipped nearly 3% in late trading Tuesday after the memory-chip company said it would sell about $1 billion in fresh stock as the company trades at its highest prices since the dot-com boom. Micron said underwriters had access to about $150 million in additional shares it could offer at the public offering price, which has yet to be determined. Micron will use the proceeds from the offering to pay down debt, with $476 million earmarked for notes set to mature in 2023. Micron closed at $41.98 and reached $42 in intraday trading Tuesday, its highest prices since 2001, but shares fell lower than $41 in late trading after the announcement. The company has profited from a spike in the price of memory chips, which has increased the cost of some tech gadgets for consumers, and said in its most recent earnings report that it expects demand to continue to be high. Micron stock is up 91% so far in 2017, as the S&P 500 index has gained 13.7%.Market Pulse Stories are Rapid-fire, short news bursts on stocks and markets as they move. Visit MarketWatch.com for more information on this news.
General Electric, Rite Aid Tumble into Monday’s 52-Week Low Club
Switch prices IPO above range at $17, raises more than $500 million
Data-center operator Switch Inc. priced its initial public offering higher than expected Thursday evening to pull in more than half a billion dollars. The Las Vegas-based data-center company, which owns three large data centers and is developing a fourth, announced that it would sell 31.25 million shares at $17 apiece, after previously stating a target range of $14 to $16. At that price, Switch stands to collect at least $531.25 million at a valuation of about $4.2 billion; underwriters have access to another 4.7 million shares, which could push the take even higher. The company has said it will use the proceeds to buy out investors in Switch Ltd. and take control of that company though Switch Inc., which was just incorporated in 2017. A multi-class share structure will allow founder and Chief Executive Rob Roy to maintain control, as his shares will have 10 times the voting rights of common shares. Switch is expected to begin trading Friday morning on the New York Stock Exchange under the ticker symbol SWCH. Market Pulse Stories are Rapid-fire, short news bursts on stocks and markets as they move. Visit MarketWatch.com for more information on this news.
Avon, Rite Aid Slide into Friday’s 52-Week Low Club
DexCom and Rite Aid tumble while Abbott and AbbVie rise
DexCom and Rite Aid fall while Abbott Laboratories and AbbVie jump
Why Rite Aid Hit a New Multiyear Low
Data center design and operations company Switch Inc. said Monday that it planned to sell 31.25 million shares of Class A common stock in an initial public offering that could raise up to $500 million. The IPO, initially filed earlier this month, is expected to price between $14 and $16 a share. Including options granted to underwriters to buy additional shares, the IPO could raise up to $575 million. The company had revenue of $318.4 million in 2016, up 20% from 2015, although profits fell more than 50% to $31.4 million from $73.5 million. The company said it planned to use the proceeds from the IPO to buy out investors in Switch Ltd. and take control of that company though Switch Inc., which was just incorporated in 2017. The company is planning to go public at a time that the SPDR Technology Select Sector ETF has gained 3.2% over the past three months, while the S&P 500 has tacked on 2.5%.Market Pulse Stories are Rapid-fire, short news bursts on stocks and markets as they move. Visit MarketWatch.com for more information on this news.
Billion-dollar database software startup MongoDB files for IPO
MongoDB Inc. , a subscription-based database software startup valued at more than $1 billion, filed for its initial public offering, according to the Securities and Exchange Commission late Thursday. Morgan Stanley, Goldman Sachs and Barclays are listed among the underwriters. MongoDB said it seeks up to $100 million in the IPO, but that figure is generally used as a placeholder in initial filings. The New York City-based company was last valued at $1.6 billion by venture capitalists with more than $300 million in total VC funding, according to The Wall Street Journal. For the fiscal year ended Jan. 31, 2017, MongoDB reported revenue of $101.4 million, a 55% rise from the previous year, for a net loss of $86.7 million, or $3.55 a share. The company plans to list under the ticker symbol "MDB" on the Nasdaq.Market Pulse Stories are Rapid-fire, short news bursts on stocks and markets as they move. Visit MarketWatch.com for more information on this news.
Walgreens is taking over 1,900 Rite Aids
Walgreens Boots Alliance agreed to buy about 250 fewer stores from Rite Aid than it had previously planned.
Juno Therapeutics to launch $225 million follow-on offering
Shares of Juno Therapeutics Inc. fell more than 1% late Wednesday after the biopharmaceutical company announced the launch of a proposed follow-on public offering worth $225 million. Juno said it expects to grant the underwriters an option to purchase up to an additional $33.75 million of shares. The company plans on using the proceeds for general corporate purposes and working capital, Juno said in a statement. Morgan Stanley and J.P. Morgan are joint bookrunners. The stock ended the regular trading session up 3.2%.
Market Pulse Stories are Rapid-fire, short news bursts on stocks and markets as they move. Visit MarketWatch.com for more information on this news.
UPDATE: Alnylam shares jump 24% on positive results from late-stage trial of hATTR amyloidosis treatment
Sanofi and Alnylam Pharmaceuticals Inc. on Wednesday reported positive results in a late-stage trial of a treatment for Hereditary ATTR (hATTR) Amyliodosis patients with polyneuropathy. Alnylam shares jumped 24% after resuming trading following a halt. In a joint statement, the companies said an investigational RNAi therapeutic met its primary and secondary endpoints. The disease is an inherited one that is progressively debilitating and often fatal and is caused by mutations in the TTR gene. TTR protein is produced in the liver and usually acts as a carrier for vitamin A. Mutations can cause proteins to accumulate and damage organs and tissue, including the heart. About 50,000 people worldwide suffer from the disease, which currently has no approved treatment apart from liver transplant. Patients typically have a life expectancy of 2.5 to 15 years after the first symptoms appear. "This is a significant milestone that supports our belief that RNAi therapeutics have the potential to become an innovative new class of medicines for patients with rare genetic diseases," said Elias Zerhouni, M.D., president, global R&D at Sanofi in a statement. Alnylam shares had gained 100.4% in 2017 through Tuesday, while the S&P 500 has gained 12%. Market Pulse Stories are Rapid-fire, short news bursts on stocks and markets as they move. Visit MarketWatch.com for more information on this news.
Walgreens is taking over some of your Rite Aid locations
Walgreens Boots Alliance agreed to buy about 250 fewer stores from Rite Aid than it had previously planned.
Walgreens to revise rite aid deal
Walgreens Boots Alliance is set to revise its agreement to buy some Rite Aid stores to resolve outstanding antitrust concerns, according to Bloomberg. Roselle Chen reports.
Video provided by Reuters
Walgreens gets regulatory nod for slimmed-down Rite Aid deal
(Reuters) - U.S. antitrust regulators have allowed a slimmed-down deal for drugstore chain Walgreens Boots Alliance Inc to buy about 42 percent of Rite Aid Corp's U.S. stores for $4.38 billion, Walgreens said on Tuesday.
Walgreens cleared to purchase 1,900-plus Rite Aid stores and more for $4.4 billion
Walgreens Boots Alliance Inc. said Tuesday that it has gotten regulatory approval to purchase Rite Aid Corp. assets including 1,932 stores, three distribution centers and related inventory for $4.375 billion in cash. This deal updates the terms of the June 2017 agreement, which was a $5.175 billion deal for 2,186 stores. Store purchases are expected to start in October and complete in spring 2018, and will focus primarily on the northeast and southern U.S. The three distribution centers, which won't begin their transition for at least a year, are in Dayville, Conn., Philadelphia, and Spartanburg, S.C. Walgreens will assume certain limited-store liabilities in the transaction, the related leases and give Rite Aid the option to become a member of the Walgreens Boots Alliance's group purchasing organization, which Rite Aid can exercise through May 2019. After the stores are acquired, they are expected to be converted to the Walgreens brand. The deal is not expected to impact adjusted earnings per share in the fiscal year ending August 2018. The company expects synergies of more than $300 million, fully realized within four years of the initial closing. Walgreens shares are unchanged in premarket trading and up 2.2% for the past year. Rite Aid shares are up 2.2% in premarket trading, but down 66% for the last year. And the S&P 500 index is up 17.1% for the past 12 months. Market Pulse Stories are Rapid-fire, short news bursts on stocks and markets as they move. Visit MarketWatch.com for more information on this news.
J.J. Abrams to write and direct 2019's 'Star Wars: Episode IX'
LOS ANGELES, Sept 12 (Reuters) - Filmmaker J.J. Abrams will
write and direct the ninth installment of the ongoing "Star
Wars" saga, Walt Disney Co said Tuesday, a week after
the film lost its writer-director due to creative differences
with the studio.
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